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Mitzi Perdue

Mitzi is a businesswoman, author, and a master storyteller. She holds degrees from Harvard University and George Washington University, is a past president of the 35,000 member American Agri-Women and was one of the U.S. Delegates to the United Nations Conference on Women in Nairobi. She currently writes for the Academy of Women’s Health, and GEN, Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News.

Mitzi Perdue draws on the experience of her family of origin, the Henderson Estate Company that dates back to 1890 and was the forerunner of the Sheraton Hotels (her father was co-founder of the chain). She also looks to her marital family (she’s the widow of Frank Perdue from Perdue Farms) that began in 1920.

In both cases, family members in each generation put enormous effort into creating and maintaining strong, values-based cultures. Her talks stem from her lifelong observations not only of how her two families have kept together over a combined total of 224 years, but she’s also closely observed how other high net worth families, often ones she’s known since childhood, created and continuously strengthen positive cultures. She’s also observed almost countless cases where families that lacked a supportive culture failed spectacularly.

Keynote Address: Monday, September 24 | 1:20 PM - 2:45 PM


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cal turner jr.

Cal Turner, Jr. received his B.A., cum laude, from Vanderbilt University in 1962.  Following his graduation from Vanderbilt, Mr. Turner served for more than three years as an officer in the United States Navy.  In December 1965, he began his career at Dollar General, the company founded by his father and grandfather in 1939.  He succeeded his father as president in 1977 and as chairman in 1988.  At the time of his retirement in 2003, Dollar General had grown into a New York Stock Exchange retailer with more than 6,000 stores in 27 states and annual sales in excess of $6 billion.

Mr. Turner has served on the boards of a number of civic and charitable organizations, including the Easter Seal Society of Tennessee, Inc., Fisk University, the PENCIL Foundation and the YMCA of Middle Tennessee.  From 2000 – 2001 he was president of the Board of Governors of the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce.  He has served as Chairman of the YMCA of Middle Tennessee and Lindsey Wilson College in Columbia, Kentucky and he is currently trustee emeritus of Vanderbilt University after serving on the Vanderbilt Board of Trust for 17 years.

Keynote Address: Tuesday, September 25 | 8:30 AM - 9:30 AM


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Dr. John Townsend

Dr. John Townsend is a New York Times bestselling author, business consultant, leadership coach and psychologist. He has written over 30 books, selling 10 million copies, including the Boundaries series and his newest book, Leading From Your Gut, to be released summer of 2018.

For more than twenty years Dr. Townsend has engaged with leaders, organizations and individuals around the globe, offering them life-changing solutions to their challenges. He and his organization provide team and executive coaching, corporate consulting, and give conference presentations. Dr. Townsend personally also coaches families and family businesses.

John has launched TownsendNOW.com, a digital content and experience base for those wanting to lead and grow. In addition, the Townsend Leadership Program, which develops leaders nationwide, is conducted by a team of Directors who have been personally trained by John. Dr. Townsend is also founder of the online Townsend Institute for Leadership and Counseling at Concordia University Irvine, offering graduate degrees and credentialing in Organizational Leadership, Executive Coaching and Counseling.

Keynote Address: Wednesday, September 26 | 10:15AM - 11:30AM